When you're fighting depression, it's really common to at times find it difficult to concentrate - which unfortunately, can make you feel ashamed, frustrated and angry with yourself. And, if you can relate, then we'd like to share with you what "depression lack-of-concentration" looks like according to members of The Depression Project's community - in order to:
- Help you feel like you're not alone;
- Help you see just how common it is to experience concentration difficulties when you're in a depressive episode - which we hope will lead to you cutting yourself some slack any time you find it difficult to concentrate, and to you being more compassionate with yourself instead.
Are you ready?
What "Depression Lack-Of-Concentration" Looks Like - According To Members Of The Depression Project's Community
- "Thinking you're actually listening to people but realising you're not taking anything in and somehow saying yes in all the right places. Wanting to watch a TV show and having it on but you might as well have it on mute or look out the window because you see the images moving but could be looking at everything blankly. Trying to read something that actually interests you but you give up after three words or read the same page ten times but still couldn't tell anyone a single word you've just read. Having to check the date several times a day despite already writing it down an hour ago. This is just a small list, but they're probably the most reoccurring aspects of 'depression lack-of-concentration' for me."
- "Needing to read the same page over and over because it feels like it's written in a foreign language and it's just not making sense."
- "Blurry empty space in your mind. It's always like a foggy day. That's it."
- "Just looking at things/jobs, being overwhelmed and not even starting any."
- "Starting a heap of things but never finishing any."
- "Sitting staring into space and then remembering what you 'should' be doing. Not being able to focus on anything anyone is saying, even if you’re trying really, really hard. Suddenly having to stop what you’re doing so you can remember what you’re doing. Making a list of chores so you don’t forget what you have to do, but then forgetting what should be on it once you start writing."
- "Being unable to get started on tasks. Have difficulty maintaining any motivation or focus. It's a fog that others who have not had depression will never understand. It's like slogging through knee deep mud with boots on."
- "Mind goes blank, sometimes you feel you won’t remember friends or family. You don’t even know who you are anymore!"
- "Having to watch a show multiple times to get the story line because you keep forgetting or are unable to actually follow it."
- "Not being able to remember the words that you want to say."
- "Blankly staring at someone or something then suddenly realising you're out of it and you go 'huh?'. Zoning out during a conversation. Even though it was explained to you many times, you still don't get it - with or without illustration. There is slow intake of information. You forget what was told to you for a moment. You keep asking questions about something even though it was addressed just a moment ago."
- "It’s more like brain fog for me. I start or think about doing something important or unimportant and within seconds I have no idea what my plan had been."
- "Realising that you haven't got a clue what has been going on around you because your mind is stuck on replay."
- "Working twice as hard but getting half as much done."
- "Two words: zoning out."
- "It's like there's a maze inside your mind where you get lost for days, months, and sometimes years too."
- "It's either pure and utter exhaustion from the fight to grab a thought or pure exasperating frustration which in turn is just as exhausting. Any aspect of depression, whatever bit, is just exhausting on all levels, full stop."
- "Forgetting and procrastination."
If you can relate to one or more of the above descriptions of what "depression lack-of-concentration" looks like, our friend, then like we said, please know that you are not alone, and try not to shame yourself for this all-too-common aspect of depression.
All our love,
The Depression Project Team.